Long-term Ecological Reflections Program: Arts, Humanities, and Science in Alliance
In a creative variety of programs, writers, artists, scientists and thought-leaders of many fields come together at the H. J. Andrews Research Forest to reflect on the meaning and significance of the ancient forest ecosystem, as the forest—and its relation to human culture—evolves over time. The convener is the Long-term Ecological Reflections project, a branch of the Spring Creek Project for Ideas, Nature, and the Written Word.
Modeled after NSF’s Long-term Ecological Research programs, the Long-term Ecological Reflections programs are distinctive for their commitment to widely interdisciplinary (sometimes, entirely undisciplined), boundlessly creative, and deeply collaborative explorations of the changing forest over generations. The goal is to create ongoing occasions for reflection and creative expression, and to collect a record of the resulting works that extends over two hundred years, 2003 – 2203.
In LTEReflections programs, writers and research scientists live and go about their work in close relation, meeting in the field or around the fire. There is an unusual richness and joy in the community of art and science that expands the perspectives of both. And there is important wisdom to be gained; the more we use all our windows on the world—storytelling and poetry, observation and experiment, myth and mathematics, reason and emotion—the greater our insights into how to live on Earth justly, joyously, and for a very long time.
LTEReflections programs include residencies at the H. J. Andrews Research Forest for creative work in prose, poetry, visual arts, and music; field symposia on compelling and vexing problems of public import; and distribution of the work and ideas through an on-line “Forest Log” of creative work, publication, websites, public performances, and educational programs.
Here’s how you can participate:
One- to two-week writer’s residencies in the “Green House,” a new, sustainably-designed studio tucked into the forest, are available by application and by invitation. Creative writers whose work reflects a keen awareness of the natural world and an appreciation for both scientific and literary ways of knowing are invited to apply for the Andrews Forest Writer’s Residency. Visit the Andrews Forest Log website for more information, including deadlines and application instructions: http://andrewsforestlog.org
Residency programs for scholars, artists, and composers are handled on a case-by-case basis. To learn about the application process, go to: http://andrewsforestlog.org/about-arts-humanities/residency-program. If you have something new and wonderful to offer, let us know.
The Blue River Writers Gathering is held every other September at the Andrews Forest. This is a chance for people writing about the natural world to come together to meet one another, share their experience, hike the trails, explore issues they have in common as writers in a reeling world, learn a new skill or explore a new idea, and in effect, to come away lifted by both the comradery and the forest. To get on the list of those to be notified when the registration opens, contact the Spring Creek Project office.
The Forest Log is an online collection of works created as part of the Long-term Ecological Reflections program at the Andrews Forest; to date, it holds the work from the first fourteen years of the planned two hundred year record.
Learn about the Ecological Reflections Network
The Andrews Forest LTEReflections program supports a national network that links similar programs, supporting arts and humanities work at dozens of LTER sites and biological field stations. Work includes contributing to workshops and symposia at national meetings, collaborating on inter-site projects, and providing research data about programs and motivations for this Arts-Science work. The network’s website is http://www.ecologicalreflections.com/.